Tuesday, April 1, 2008

play ball!

it's april, folks. i do not hear birds chirping nor do i see sunshine or green grass yet. there is, however, one thing that makes the arrival of april a wonderful event... wait, make that two things... first of all, i can officially say that we are traveling to hawaii "this month", but more importantly IT'S BASEBALL SEASON! actually, the Tigers marked opening day in March this year, but let us not speak of that game. let us pretend that april is the official beginning. "uh, yeah, can i get a do-over? the sun was in my eyes."

i like the liner that CBS Sports used in their roster report: "the Tigers could be a 1,000-pound weight (the lineup) hanging by a single strand of sewing thread (the bullpen)." seriously, we are so stacked and our defense this year is going to be amazing. but our pitching staff is real questionable. don't get me wrong, they're all good pitchers, but when the pressure's on, this well-oiled machine falls apart. watching a Tigers game is real stressful... especially after the 7th inning stretch. you just never know what might happen. i heard Zumaya the other day on the radio saying he had thoughts of retirement already. i hope he can get better, ALL the way better, and bring the heat he did back in early '07. also, i love me some Justin, but he definitely failed to live up to the hype yesterday and fell apart in the 6th and 7th. big ups to Jones and Bautista though. they did their best to hold it down. but we're not talking about that game, right? it didn't count. by the way, can you take a mulligan in baseball? just curious.

there are a lot of promising puzzle pieces though this year. shifting Guillen to the right side of the field to replace Casey was a smart move. with Renteria and Cabrera on the left side now, our infield should be quick all around and able to knock anything down. Granderson (once he's healthy) and Ordonez will be right back where they belong, but I might miss Thames. we'll see how Jacque Jones and Thomas do though before I make my final decision on that change. not a huge fan of Inge at the plate, but i'm happy for him that he'll get to start a few games with Granderson out. as for the underdog, i'm routing for Raburn to get some more PT this year. he got a few games in in '07 and he did really well coming up out of the minors. he hit well, he played outfield well... we may even see him catch a few times this year to relieve Pudge. long story short, i think he's going to be a big asset to the Tig's in the long run. he may need a few years to mature and put in his dues, but you can't put a price on a really good utility man.

so anyway, if you like baseball, probably none of this is new to you. but i'm just excited. if anyone wants to go to a game or two, let me know. i found the holy grail of "cheap" tickets on craigslist - and they're decent seats too. both of my game-going/watching buddies moved away this year, so it's just me, my beer and my bbq. the Tig's have been predicted to win the World Series... which pretty much means they won't! still, it's gonna be a fun run. PLAY BALL!